We all knew this day was coming, but there was always a twinge of hope that this wasn’t true — that Jhonny Peralta was misreported to be on the list and that the rumors were false.
Those hopes flew out the window on Monday as Peralta accepted a 50-game suspension in connection to the Biogenesis scandal. Disappointment that he would put his team in this position, shame that he would choose to cheat over putting in the effort to be clean and general sadness swept over fans in reaction to the finality of a saga that was months in development.
It’s still stunning to think Peralta used steroids; I mean, if he could use steroids, then just about anyone could have.
Quiet, unassuming and slightly pudgy, Peralta was about the last guy you would point your finger at if you were told that a player on the Detroit Tigers was using steroids. It makes you question who else on the roster could be caught down the line and how this team, or any other team, could be affected further down the road.
Meanwhile, it also creates questions about how the Tigers lineup will stack up without the power-hitting shortstop in the sixth spot.
The Tigers did trade for Jose Iglesias, and that will help fill the questions on the defensive side and also answer the long-term question of where the team will go when Peralta hits free agency. However, the hitting question is still out there, as well as the huge question of whether to allow Peralta back on the roster and in the lineup heading into the playoffs.
Peralta’s saga is not over with the punishment today. In 50 days, there will be yet more distractions and questions due to Peralta’s selfish act. The Tigers will have to think long and hard about whether they want him back after the suspension, and much of it will be based off of how Iglesias does in the meantime.
It’s unfortunate and sad that Peralta has put the Tigers in this position, but the Tigers have the resources and stability to work around this sad day.